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Megan Austin

Megan Austin, Paco Martorell, Trey Miller, Lindsay Daugherty.

An increasing body of robust evidence concludes that corequisite remediation in math and English is a cost-effective alternative to traditional developmental education, offering improved immediate course progression and potentially better persistence and completion. This is the first study to disentangle the impacts of the two main elements of the corequisite model: accelerated college course placement and concurrent academic support. Utilizing a fuzzy regression discontinuity design and variation in Texas colleges' implementation of math corequisites, the study shows that college-level math course placement without additional support increases passing rates by 22 percentage points. This effect rises to 36 percentage points with concurrent developmental support. These findings bolster a growing consensus around the benefits of accelerated developmental education and suggest that a corequisite approach may have significant advantages over removing developmental education requirements entirely.

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Jesse Cunha, Trey Miller, Megan Austin, Lindsay Daugherty, Paco Martorell.

We estimate the societal costs associated with corequisite and traditional pre-requisite English developmental education and compare them to societal benefits. Our context is the randomized controlled trial conducted by Miller et al. (2022) that estimated the effects of three different approaches to English corequisites implemented in 5 Texas community colleges. The main drivers of differential costs across pathways and colleges are the number of credit and contact hours in each pathway, class sizes, and the type of faculty used to teach courses (adjunct or full-time). Corequisites are less expensive than pre-requisite pathways in two colleges, they are more expensive yet roughly similar in two other colleges, and they are much more expensive in one college. Miller et al. (2022) find that corequisites induced more students to pass the required college-level English course in all colleges, but do not find that they impacted persistence in college. Considering the enormous societal benefit of a college education, corequisites are most likely the preferred policy from a societal point of view even when they are more expensive to implement and given that they only have a small impact on the likelihood of completing college. From students’ point of view, corequisites are always preferred because they require less tuition and have a higher likelihood of success.

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